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Peppermint - Mentha piperita

Peppermint is often thought of as a culinary herb, and we have it growing plentifully in many back gardens all over the world.  I wonder how many people think to use it in a medicinal sense.  It is one of the ingredients in our new Digestive Tea, so let’s take a closer look at the aromatic herb that is Peppermint.

What does it do?

Peppermint calms spasms (it’s a spasmolytic), calms the digestive tract, helps with nausea as it is an anti-emetic, it’s a very good anti-microbial herb, helps with coughs and if you have painful and itchy skin a cold compress of peppermint is very soothing. 

What part is used?

The Leaf is used in culinary and medicinal purposes. We herbalists call this the “aerial parts”.

What can you use it for?

Because it is such a calming herb, particularly for the gut, it has a relaxing action on the muscles in the gut -  but it is also great at stimulating bile and digestive juice production – which means it helps in cases of gas/flatulence, cramps, dyspepsia and colic.  It is great for morning sickness, travel sickness and nausea.  This is because the volatile oil contained within the herb slightly anaesthetises the stomach wall. I have found this herb to be very useful during migraines or bad headaches, especially if they are related to food intolerance. 

Symptoms which respond to Peppermint:

A few drops of peppermint oil on a cool cloth is soothing for headaches.

Dyspepsia, colic, gas, flatulence, baby colic, gall bladder pain, gastritis, nausea, morning sickness, colds, flus, catarrh and excess phlegm, sinus infections and headaches.

As an aside, I love to serve Peppermint crushed in ice over the summer months – it is so cooling and soothing while the weather is so hot and humid.

Till next time

By Joanna Vinsen Loveys  BNatMed HbT

Joanna Loveys
Joanna Loveys